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Cell and Molecular Biology

Department of Biomedical Sciences  

For More Information

Missouri State University
901 South National Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65897
Office: 417-836-5603
Fax: 417-836-5588
Email: BiomedicalSciences@


Career Preparation

The comprehensive major in Cell and Molecular Biology (CMB) is a rigorous and selective program in the sciences that prepares academically serious students for the following:

  1. professional schools of medicine, dentistry, optometry, physician assistant, physical therapy or other health and medically-related professions;
  2. graduate work in cell biology, human genetics or molecular biology;
  3. graduate work in fields such as biotechnology, biochemistry, physiology, pharmacology and microbiology where a strong undergraduate foundation in cell and molecular biology would be an asset;
  4. employment in the biotechnology industries that are based on applications of cell biology, molecular biology and the scientific benefits derived from the Human Genome Project; and
  5. research involving the fusion between nanotechnology and biotechnology.

Academic Program

Because of sequential prerequisites, limited course offerings and tight course scheduling, students seeking formal admission to the degree program must begin to plan their program with a CMB advisor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences early during their freshman year.


Biomedical Sciences

  • BMS 110: Concepts in the Biomedical Sciences
  • BMS 231: Human Genetics with laboratory
  • BMS 321: Biomolecular Interactions
  • BMS 494: Senior Seminar
  • BMS 521: Molecular Cell Biology
  • BMS 525: Molecular Biology


  • CHM 160: General Chemistry I
  • CHM 170: General Chemistry II
  • CHM 175: General Chemistry Lab
  • CHM 342: Organic Chemistry I
  • CHM 343: Organic Chemistry II (with lab) or CHM 344: Organic Chemistry II (lecture only)


  • PHY 123: Introduction to Physics I or PHY 203: Foundation of Physics I
  • PHY 124: Introduction to Physics II or PHY 204: Foundation of Physics II


  • MTH 287: Computational Calculus with Analytic Geometry or MTH 261: Analytic Geometry and Calculus I

Notes: PHY 123 requires CSC 101 or computer proficiency examination; PHY 203 and 204 also require MTH 261. See the Missouri State Catalog online at www.missouristate.edu/catalog for course descriptions and prerequisites.

Advisor-Approved Electives

At least 16 hours of electives must be at the 300 level or above. Ten of the 16 credit hours must have a BMS prefix. All electives must be approved by the CMB advisor at the time the degree program is filed. Approved electives will take into consideration the post-graduation objectives of the student.

  • BMS 308: Human Physiology
  • BMS 497: Topics in the Biomedical Sciences
  • BMS 514: Scanning Electron Microscopy
  • BMS 516: Transmission Electron Microscopy
  • BMS 524: Virology
  • BMS 529: Molecular Genetics
  • BMS 535: Signal Transduction
  • BMS 540: Biotechnology
  • BMS 558: Recombinant DNA Techniques
  • BMS 569: Neurobiology
  • BMS 570: Principles of Pharmacology
  • BMS 582: Embryology
  • BMS 585: Histology
  • BMS 593: Bioinformatics
  • BIO 310: Microbiology
  • BIO 511: Immunology
  • CHM 552: Biochemistry II

Note: BMS 582 and 585 require BMS 307 or BIO 380; CHM 480 is a recommended elective for students planning to enter CMB graduate programs.

Admission to the Program

A student planning to major in CMB should meet with one of the program advisors who will assist in selecting the most appropriate academic and pre-professional advisor to help that student reach his or her goals. Formal admission requires completion of at least 25 hours with an overall science GPA of 2.5. However, students should declare a CMB major and begin working with an advisor as early as possible.


Eight faculty members are involved in teaching either core courses or elective courses in the CMB program. Areas of expertise represented by these faculty include molecular genetics, signal transduction, nanotechnology, virology, embryology, electron microscopy and other areas relevant to the revolution in genetics brought about by research in the Human Genome Project and the emerging fusion between Biotechnology and Nanotechnology.


The CMB program is housed on the third floor of the Professional Building; the electron microscopy laboratory is located on the ground floor of Temple Hall. An array of equipment for executing the important, modern research techniques of the discipline are available in the laboratories in the Professional Building. Techniques not supported by equipment on site are supplemented by collaborative arrangements with other institutions.

Sample Schedule

Missouri State is committed to assisting students to graduate in four years--see sample graduation plans for this major.

The following is a sample schedule for this major--your actual schedule will vary.

Freshman Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Concepts in the Biomedical Sciences
General Chemistry I
Writing I
Introduction to University Life
Introductory Psychology
Second Semester Courses Hours
Human Genetics with laboratory
General Chemistry II
General Chemistry Lab
Humanities Elective
Computers for Learning

Sophomore Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Pre-Calculus Mathematics
Organic Chemistry I
American Democracy and Citizenship
Biomolecular Interactions
Fitness for Living
Second Semester Courses Hours
Organic Chemistry II
Human Anatomy
Humanities/Social Science Elective
Public Speaking

Junior Year

First Semester Courses Hours
Molecular Cell Biology
Introduction to Physics I
BMS Elective
Technical Writing (Writing II)
Second Semester Courses Hours
Molecular Biology
Introduction to Physics II
History of the U.S.
Computational Calculus with Analytical Geometry

Senior Year

First Semester Courses Hours
BMS elective
BMS elective
Self-Understanding elective
Capstone Course
BMS or other electives
Second Semester Courses Hours
BMS Senior Seminar
Self-Understanding elective
BMS elective
BMS elective
BMS or other electives